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#1 2010-12-02 22:00:50

Registered: 2010-11-05
Posts: 26

Hybrid Graphic (Nvidia Optimus) Solution Quesion

I am looking at a notebook (Asus UL30JT) with nvidia optimus hybrid graphic solution, consisting of an intel gma x4500 and a nvidia gt310m graphics card. The Notebook is based on the Intel HM55 Express Chipset.

Googling got me controversial results and none up to date.

My question is: Will Arch run on the machine and more importantly utilize the hybrid graphic solution or won't this feature work ?


#2 2010-12-02 22:47:05

Registered: 2009-08-25
Posts: 3,605

Re: Hybrid Graphic (Nvidia Optimus) Solution Quesion

Hybrid graphics? No way. X would need quite a bit of re-architecturing to provide that.

On some optimus notebooks it's possible to select the graphic card in the bios. You can use the nvidia card on those. But only on those.
Then there are some other notebooks where you can only use intel graphics, but it's at least possible to deactivate the nvidia card so it doesn't consume power and thus drain the battery. And then there's the group of notebooks where you can only use the intel graphics and at the same time the nvidia card will drain the battery despite not being used.

These people know the most about this stuff: I think your notebook falls into the second category - you can deactivate the nvidia card. My advice: search for a non-optimus laptop with nvidia graphics. Do they even still exist though?

Edit: Hmm, it seems it's actually possible to use the nvidia card on select machines, I'm reading right now about hacks for some Sony notebooks. They're limited to those notebooks of course, so the same stuff will not work with your Asus. Anyway, that website is your starting point, maybe you'll find a fitting notebook there.

Last edited by Gusar (2010-12-02 22:54:21)


#3 2010-12-05 21:21:34

Mad Fish
Registered: 2009-09-22
Posts: 295

Re: Hybrid Graphic (Nvidia Optimus) Solution Quesion

I own exactly this model. You can switch between hybrid mode and NVIDIA-only mode in BIOS. I'm running Arch Linux in NVIDIA-only mode just fine. Actually, it is not more power-hungry than hybrid mode in Windows 7 (I'm dual-booting). Total time on battery is quite the same in both cases.

So, I think you will be fine with it, too.


#4 2011-01-21 21:22:35

From: Madrid, Spain
Registered: 2005-06-22
Posts: 272

Re: Hybrid Graphic (Nvidia Optimus) Solution Quesion

I have a Dell XPS 15 with this Intel+Nvidia setup (Optimus in Windows). Haven't checked the bios or even tried to use the Nvidia card. But I did blacklist the nouveau module and that seems to keep the laptop cooler and battery life longer (I added !nouveau to the MODULES array in /etc/rc.conf). Just in case it helps those who want, but can't, switch it off in bios.


#5 2011-04-12 18:37:10

Registered: 2011-03-11
Posts: 2

Re: Hybrid Graphic (Nvidia Optimus) Solution Quesion

Hi, I have a Dell xps l501x with a nvidia-hybrid-setup.

I did not manage to utilize my nvidia card but I got some good results disabling the nvidia card in favor of the intel-chip.

Like Bogart pointed out, it already helps to blacklist the nouveau driver. However after following some articles on the hybrid-graphics-linux mailing list I managed to significantly decrease energy drain by disabling the nvidia card. In short, I compiled the acpi_call module (by Michal Kottman) [present in AUR] and executed the following command:

echo "\_SB.PCI0.P0P2.PEGP.NVOP 0 0x100 0x1A {255,255,255,255}" > /proc/acpi/call
echo "\_SB.PCI0.P0P2.PEGP._PS3" > /proc/acpi/call

If you want to read up on the sources I used, see

Original post I followed on the hybrid-graphics-linux mailing list by Jesus Monzon Legido: … 00450.html

Source of the acpi_call module by Michal Kottman:

Remember, use this method for Dell xps l501x laptops only!
For more general information, see a post by OliBob:


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